Category Archives: Community

Pellissippi State to host forum featuring mayors Burchett, Rogero

Pellissippi State Community College hosts a forum that features an interview and Q&A with Knox County Mayor Tim Burchett and Knoxville Mayor Madeline Rogero on Thursday, April 10.

The mayoral forum, “How Local Politics Impacts Business and You,” begins at 6 p.m. in the Clayton Performing Arts Center at the college’s Hardin Valley Campus, 10915 Hardin Valley Road. The event is free and the community is invited.

“We are very excited and honored to have mayors Rogero and Burchett at Pellissippi State,” said Lucinda Alexander, an associate professor of Business and Computer Technology. “This will be a great venue to expose our students and the community to what local government does and how it impacts our lives.”

The forum will focus on the vision for metro Knoxville, areas of success and those in need of improvement in the local economy, and how local government is involved in economic development.

The forum is scheduled to last about an hour. It will include interviews with Rogero and Burchett, beginning with questions about each mayor’s background and what led each to a career in public service. In addition to questions from the moderator, Pellissippi State students will be able to ask questions that have been prescreened by faculty.

The forum is sponsored by Pellissippi State’s Business and Computer Technology Department, the League of Women Voters, and the college’s student Rotaract Club.

To learn more about the forum, call (865) 694-6656. For more information about Pellissippi State, visit www.pstcc.edu or call (865) 694-6400.

To request accommodations for a disability, contact the executive director of Human Resources and Affirmative Action at (865) 694-6607 or humanresources@pstcc.edu.

Pellissippi State announces new Automated Industrial Systems concentration

Automation is at the technological cutting edge of manufacturing. Now training in that technology is available at Pellissippi State Community College, and it’s linked to a degree.

In fall 2013, Pellissippi State launched a new Automated Industrial Systems concentration within the Engineering Technology program. Students who graduate in Engineering Technology earn an Associate of Applied Science degree.

“Manufacturing is now high-tech. I don’t know of any manufacturing job that doesn’t include automation,” said Margaret Ann Jeffries, dean of Engineering and Media Technologies.

The new AIS concentration will train students to operate state-of-the-art automated manufacturing equipment, including programmable controller training systems, robotics and motor training equipment.

“In order for students to be ready to go to work,” said L. Anthony Wise Jr., Pellissippi State president, “we must continue to integrate newer technology into our training programs.

“The cutting-edge equipment used in our AIS concentration courses also will be used for our new and existing engineering technology, workforce training, and STEM [science, technology, engineering and mathematics] awareness programs.”

Much of the new training equipment was purchased through a $50,000 grant from DENSO Manufacturing Tennessee.

“At DENSO Manufacturing Tennessee, we specialize in robot design and programming and now have more than 800 robots on our production lines,” said Mike Brackett. Brackett is a DENSO Foundation board member and senior vice president of Corporate Services at DENSO Manufacturing Tennessee.

“Automation will continue to be critical in the future of DENSO and our automotive customers, meaning we need talented and knowledgeable people in this area.”

DENSO is not the only local manufacturer that uses automated industrial systems.

“Green Mountain Coffee Roasters, Inc. utilizes advanced automation and robotic systems throughout our production process,” said Kennon Rollins, engineer manager for Green Mountain. The Vermont-based company has a manufacturing facility at Forks of the River in East Knox County.

“With the advancement of automated control systems, the need for proficient skills in computers and electrical, pneumatic, and mechanical systems and controls has only increased. It is an absolute necessity to have not only technical knowledge but also critical thinking skills that can be used for troubleshooting or getting to a root cause of a problem.”

For more information about Engineering Technology and other academic offerings at Pellissippi State, call (865) 694-6400 or visit www.pstcc.edu.

Pellissippi State hosts Knoxville Opera for ‘Magical Music of Shakespeare’

“The Magical Music of Shakespeare” is the theme of a special Knoxville Opera Company performance at Pellissippi State Community College on Monday, Feb. 24.

The KOC program features musical selections from operas and Broadway musicals that were inspired by Shakespeare plays, among them, “Romeo and Juliet,” “Hamlet,” and “Othello.” Performers include University of Tennessee Opera Theatre alumni. Brian Salesky is executive director and conductor of the Knoxville Opera.

“The Magical Music of Shakespeare” is at 2 p.m. in the Goins Building Auditorium on the Hardin Valley Campus, 10915 Hardin Valley Road. The event is free and the community is invited.

“We’re delighted to have the Knoxville Opera come to present a program of Shakespeare-inspired opera,” said Carol Luther, professor of English at Pellissippi State.

“Shakespeare’s influence has spread to many other arts. The musical adaptations reveal new facets in Shakespeare’s plays and once again confirm his genius.”

For more information about Pellissippi State, visit www.pstcc.edu or call (865) 694-6400. To request accommodations for a disability, contact the executive director of Human Resources at (865) 694-6607 or humanresources@pstcc.edu.

Pellissippi State hosts Young Inventors Fair

Young inventors are invited to bring their creations, innovations and science fair projects to Pellissippi State Community College for the Third Annual Young Inventors Fair Saturday, Feb. 15.

The Young Inventors Fair is noon-5 at the Strawberry Plains Campus, 7201 Strawberry Plains Pike.

Any student in elementary through high school with an invention or innovative science fair submission can participate. Contestants have the chance to win prizes and entry into the Southern Appalachian Science and Engineering Fair.

“The Young Inventors Fair is similar to a science fair, but it has an angle toward creation and invention,” said Jerry Burns, professor of Natural and Behavioral Sciences and organizer of the event.

“Unlike a typical science fair, this event is meant to reward students who have a great idea—even if the full science isn’t there, or if they weren’t able to feasibly follow through with the actual creation. It’s a way to reward students who think innovatively.”

Student projects are judged by a panel of faculty members from Pellissippi State, and winners are announced by age group.

“We feel like this event is a great way to get our name out to schools, to let them know that Pellissippi State has a new campus in the area,” said Mike North, Strawberry Plains Campus dean. “Students who participate in this Young Inventors Fair as middle-schoolers might return to Pellissippi State as college students.”

The Southern Appalachian Science and Engineering Fair is a regional science fair that takes place at the University of Tennessee’s Thompson-Boling Arena. It’s open to students in middle and high school, and students are qualified to enter after winning individual school science fairs.

The Young Inventors Fair could offer students a second chance to participate in the SASEF regional event if they didn’t win their own school science fair.

For more information about the Young Inventors Fair, email the Pellissippi State Science Club at science_club@pstcc.edu.

For more information about Pellissippi State, visit www.pstcc.edu or call (865) 694-6400. To request accommodations for a disability, contact the executive director of Human Resources at (865) 694-6607 or humanresources@pstcc.edu.

Pellissippi State campuses host free Black History Month events

Pellissippi State Community College is celebrating Black History Month with numerous events at its five campuses throughout February. Activities are free and the community is invited.

The Magnolia Avenue Campus starts the month-long activities with “Healthy Pelli: Campus Health Fair,” Wednesday, Feb. 5. Each Friday in February, the site hosts an African Jazz Cafe in the Lobby.

The Division Street Campus offers two films in February: Disney’s “Ruby Bridges” on the 11th and “Mandela: Long Walk to Freedom” on the 20th. Both are at 12:15 p.m. in the Student Lounge.

The Magnolia Avenue Campus hosts a “History of African-American Music: Freedom Songs, Blues and Jazz” 10:45 a.m.-Noon Wednesday, Feb. 12, in the Community Room. The presentation features local jazz artist Kelle Jolly.

The Blount County Campus presents the documentary “The Underground Railroad” Tuesday, Feb. 18, in the Educational Resources Center.

At the Hardin Valley Campus, Feb. 21 brings “A Celebration of African-American Art, Music and Literature.” The event is in the Goins Building College Center, 11 a.m.-2 p.m. It features an art display, performance by the Vine Middle School African Dancers and Drummers, poetry reading by Oak Ridge poet Rose Weaver, and “Taste of Soul Food.”

Also at the Hardin Valley site, Feb. 27 the community is invited to a Faculty Lecture Series presentation: “John Brown: Maniacal Egotist or Moral Crusader?” by Joy Ingram, an associate professor. The talk is at 2 p.m. in the Goins Building Auditorium.

Throughout the month, African-American history exhibits will be on display in the Community Room of the Magnolia Avenue Campus, the Lobby of the Strawberry Plains Campus, the Student Lounge of the Division Street Campus, and the Educational Resources centers of the Blount County and Hardin Valley campuses.

The theme of the display at the Magnolia Avenue Campus is “All About That Jazz”; Division Street, “Embrace African-American Heritage Board of Fame”; and Strawberry Plains, “African-Americans of Influence.”

Other ongoing events include African tea and coffee tastings:

  • Hardin Valley, Goins Building Rotunda, 8:30-10 a.m. Wednesdays
  • Division Street, Student Lounge, 9-10:30 a.m. Wednesdays
  • Strawberry Plains, Lobby, 9-10:30 a.m. Mondays

For more information about Pellissippi State, visit www.pstcc.edu or call (865) 694-6400. To request accommodations for a disability, contact the executive director of Human Resources at (865) 694-6607 or humanresources@pstcc.edu.

Pellissippi State ranks at top for National Voter Registration Day

A student-led voter registration effort fall semester at Pellissippi State Community College ranked among the top highest in number of registered voters in the nation.

Pellissippi State’s National Voter Registration Day 2013 event registered 251 voters, earning the college a ranking of 21st in the nation in registering the most voters at individual events, according to National Voter Registration Day’s Communications and Field Report, prepared by Voto Latino.

National Voter Registration Day was Sept. 24. That day, there were 809 registration events around the nation, including at colleges, civic and community clubs, and other community service-oriented organizations.

“We partnered with Knoxville’s League of Women Voters to sponsor voter registration among college students, to help publicize the League of Women Voters, to help voters judge candidates and to help citizen organizations host effective candidate forums,” said Lisa Bogaty, associate professor in Business and Computer Technology.

Pellissippi State’s event took place all week at the Hardin Valley Campus. The college teamed up student, faculty and staff volunteers with members of the League of Women Voters Knoxville/Knox County.

Four classes at the two-year school also worked on various aspects of the event, from conducting marketing research to designing and producing posters to developing databases for surveys.

“It’s wonderful from a Service-Learning perspective, because each class has had an opportunity to learn and volunteer,” Bogaty said.

The Service-Learning program encourages Pellissippi State students to engage in a culture of civic engagement and altruism, partnering traditional academic experiences with opportunities for volunteerism and community service.

Overall, National Voter Registration Day resulted in 56,196 voters being registered among all 50 states.

For more information about Pellissippi State, visit www.pstcc.edu or call (865) 694-6400.

Pellissippi State generates $261 million annual economic impact

Pellissippi State Community College pumped an average of $261 million each year into the local economy over the past five years, a recent study shows.

The 26th annual analysis of the economic impact of the college on the Knox and Blount county area revealed that the value of business volume, jobs and individual income amounted to about $1.3 billion in the 2008-2013 period, or an average of $261 million each year.

Fred H. Martin, an educational consultant who completed the study, says local business volume—the total amount generated locally by businesses from the college’s direct and indirect expenditures—was $630 million for the five-year period. Of that total, $513 million came from non-local revenues, such as state appropriations, state and federal contracts and grants, and federal and state student financial aid revenues.

Although Pellissippi State had an average of only 494 full-time-equivalent employees per year during the period, the total employment created and sustained by the college’s expenditures was estimated at 42,947 jobs for the five years. Of that number, 32,565 jobs were created by external or new funds.

Using the more conservative of two different calculations, Martin has estimated that the impact of the college’s expenditures on personal income in the area amounted to about $676 million during 2008-2013, of which $561 million came from external or new funds.

Of the college’s $1.3 billion total economic impact, about $1.1 billion ($214 million each year) could be attributed to the infusion of new non-local revenues.

“This impact would likely not have occurred without the presence of Pellissippi State in the area,” Martin said.

The economic impact study notes that each dollar of local revenue coming into Pellissippi State generated a return on investment of about $3.67 in local business volume. The individual income generated ranged from $3.94 to $4.18, for a total return on investment of at least $7.61.

The study also estimated that a two-year associate’s degree graduate could expect to earn about $350,000 more over his or her work lifetime than if the individual had only a high school diploma. For the most recent class of Pellissippi State graduates, this difference could mean an additional $441 million in lifetime earnings, plus about $2.4 million in additional annual tax payments.

Finally, the study described a number of benefits to society that are proven to accompany higher levels of education.

“The results of this economic impact study clearly demonstrate that Pellissippi State continues to be a major contributor to the economic base of Knox and Blount counties,” Martin said. “This economic impact is expressed in this study in terms of jobs created, business volume generated and personal income earned.”

The complete study is available on the following website: www.pstcc.edu/departments/institutional_research/economic/eis_2008-2013.pdf.

Young filmmakers address making a difference at ‘Give a Damn?’ showing, Q&A

Poster with 3 young men, picture of the world, and information about eventCan you make a difference? Students and the community have the opportunity to pose that and other significant questions to three young activist filmmakers Pellissippi State Community College is hosting on Friday, Feb. 7.

The filmmakers will take part in a question-and-answer session after the showing of their feature-length documentary, “Give a Damn?” on the Hardin Valley Campus. Refreshments will be served at a reception with the trio following the film and Q&A.

“Give a Damn?” is a documentary about two idealistic friends who convince a third friend (who is not so sure he ‘gives a damn’) to join them as they attempt to immerse themselves in poverty while traveling across three continents. The filmmakers choose to subsist on $1.25 per day — the amount on which an average resident of Kibera, one of Kenya, Africa’s largest slums, lives.

“The goal,” explains the ‘Give a Damn?’ website, “was to make a funny, adventurous and compelling film about the ability young people have to make a difference in … poverty and injustice.”

The documentary stars the film’s creators: Dan Parris, a Biola University graduate and owner of Speak Up Productions LLC; David Peterka, founder of the nonprofit organization When The Saints; and Rob Lehr, a graduate of Missouri State University who operates Hambone Productions.

Lehr serves as the skeptic among the friends in the documentary, and the film ultimately makes the case that the current generation can have a profound impact on global social issues.

Parris, Peterka and Lehr will be present for the screening, which begins at 11:50 a.m. in the Goins Building Auditorium, as well as the Q&A and reception.

The event is open to everyone. Admission is free, but seating is limited. Parking is free and convenient.

The documentary screening is sponsored by Pellissippi State and the Tennessee Consortium for International Studies, with support from the college’s Service-Learning program.

TnCIS, which is based at the college, organizes study abroad opportunities as part of its mission of boosting international experience and culture in higher education across the state. More than 425 students and 65 faculty from across Tennessee participated in TnCIS’ summer 2013 study abroad. There are 18 study abroad programs planned for summer 2014. For more information about TnCIS, visit www.tncis.org or call (865) 539-7280.

Now in its third year, the Service-Learning program allows Pellissippi State students and faculty to integrate meaningful community service and reflection with more traditional learning experiences, teaching civic responsibility and strengthening communities. For more information about Service-Learning, call (865) 694-6492 or email service-learning@pstcc.edu.

For more information about Pellissippi State, visit www.pstcc.edu or call (865) 694-6400. To request accommodations for a disability, contact the executive director of Human Resources at (865) 694-6607 or humanresources@pstcc.edu.

Politics, security expert to speak at Pellissippi State showcase

Portrait of man in suit with flags behind himPellissippi State Community College hosts Steven P. Bucci as the featured speaker Tuesday, Feb. 4, at the Student Speech Showcase.

The showcase is sponsored by Pellissippi State’s Communication Club. The event begins at 7 p.m. in the Goins Building Auditorium and is open to the community. Ample parking is available.

Bucci will deliver a speech on the state of Greece and the issues that country faces. His talk is entitled “From Prosperity to Austerity and Back: Recent, Current and Emerging Issues in Greece.”

The guest presenter is director of the Heritage Foundation’s Douglas and Sarah Allison Center for Foreign Policy Studies. He is also a senior fellow for Homeland Security and Defense Issues in Washington, D.C. A retired U.S Army colonel, Bucci served as commander of the 3rd Battalion of the 5th Special Forces and as military assistant to former Secretary of Defense Donald Rumsfeld.

“Bucci is one of those great speakers who can change the scope of how our students view the world and help them learn about things they might otherwise have not known,” said Susan Childress, a Liberal Arts instructor and Communication Club advisor.

The Student Speech Showcase also features four top student speech contest winners from the fall semester.

Student speakers are Charysse Young on the topic “Make Your Body Talk: You Need ASL Literacy,” Alexis Huddleston on “Learning to Learn,” Summer Burns on “Shoes for Everyone” and Josh Boling on “Believe It to Achieve It.” One of the speeches is in the informative style, and the others are persuasive. Each is five to eight minutes long.

For more information about Pellissippi State, visit www.pstcc.edu­ or call (865) 694-6400. To request accommodations for a disability, contact the executive director of Human Resources at (865) 694-6607 or humanresources@pstcc.edu.

Pellissippi State puts out casting call for ‘Unnecessary Farce’

Comedic actors and actresses: Try out your talents at Pellissippi State Community College. Auditions get under way at the end of this month for the play “Unnecessary Farce.”

Auditions are open to everyone. They take place 7-9 p.m. Monday and Tuesday, Jan. 27-28, in Room 156 of the Alexander Building on the college’s Hardin Valley Campus.

“Unnecessary Farce” is the tale of a police sting gone awry after a bumbling mayor, a pair of lusty civil servants and a Scottish hit man are thrown together. This is a fast-paced, physical comedy that will require performers to have perfect timing and boundless energy.

Rehearsals will be 7-10:30 p.m. Sundays, Tuesdays, Wednesdays and Thursdays.

Pellissippi State presents “Unnecessary Farce” at 7:30 p.m., April 4, 5, and 11 and at 2 p.m., April 6 and 13. Tickets will be available at www.pstcc.edu/tickets.

“Unnecessary Farce” is one of the events that make up Pellissippi State’s arts series, The Arts at Pellissippi State. The series brings to the community cultural activities ranging from music and theatre to international celebrations, lectures, and the fine arts.

For more information about The Arts at Pellissippi State, visit www.pstcc.edu/arts or call (865) 694-6400.